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California: Lessons from the World's Largest Cannabis Market

Part of the Cannabis Intelligence Briefing Series 




Published August 2019


Co-produced by Arcview Market Research and BDS Analytics, the California: Lessons from the World’s Largest Cannabis Market report dives deep into industry-leading analysis of the emerging California adult-use market, telling the story of the Golden State’s transition from a massive unregulated medical market to a comprehensively regulated adult-use market after the launch of adult-use sales on Jan. 1, 2018. The report covers the first years of legal sales numbers, the development of the market under the new regulated supply chain, trends in investment, as well as a thorough county-by-county breakdown of the world’s largest cannabis market.

Our recommendation to you: Purchase and review the 61-page report today to inform your investment decisions centered around the ever-growing California market.

A sampling of key insights:

  • Legal cannabis sales in California are projected to grow by 23% in 2019 to $3.1B, reaching $7.2B in 2024, a 19% CAGR.
  • California became the first state to experience a Y-O-Y sales decrease as a result of the transition from medical-only to adult-use rec; dropping from $3B in 2017 to $2.5B in 2018.
  • California Governor Jerry Brown predicted that legal cannabis would earn the state $643M in tax revenue in 2018. Actual tax revenue fell short, totaling just over $345 million.
  • California’s illicit market is predicted to make up 53% of all cannabis sales in 2024. States with more supportive regulatory regimes are expecting illicit sales to make up less than 30%.
  • Younger generations consume with higher frequency; 39% of Millennials and 41% of Gen X report consuming within the past six months, compared to just 20% of Baby Boomers and older generations. 

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